Thursday, January 25, 2007

A Helicopter Parent Learns a Lesson

From November, 2006

Parenting Advice From Stan the Handyman

I just got the best parenting advice I’ve had in a long time, and it was from an unlikely source. Stan has been doing some repair work around our house out of the goodness of his heart since we had trouble finding a reliable person. Anyway, Stan and I were talking about our children before he got started the other day. He told me about his son going away to college and not studying. He said he finally went up to the school and collected the son and told him, “I’m not paying for you to do this.” The son came home and got a manual labor job. When the son’s car ran low on oil and the son didn’t add more, the engine was damaged and had to be replaced. Stan told the son he couldn’t borrow his car, but that if the son bought the parts to do the repairs, Stan would do the labor. Stan said, “I just took my time. I wasn’t in no hurry.”

I told Stan that I was frustrated over an issue with my high school senior not getting himself awake in the mornings and that I had been yelling at him after his alarm clock went off. That’s why I was so fascinated by the Sonic Boom Alarm Clock and bed shaker when I came across it last week. I swear no one is paying me for this, but I think this is the answer. Regular readers will know I am worried about Rip Van Winkle (RVW) son when he goes to college next year.

I blew up again this morning and said some words that ladies shouldn’t say. I told RVW, “I have had it. You are on your own. If you are late, so be it.” When he came downstairs, we had a little conversation. “I’m sorry, Mom,” he said, “you are right.” We talked about how he would truly be on his own and that by me waking him up every morning, he was not learning to be self-sufficient. Then he asked, “How about getting me one those alarm clocks you were telling me about last week for Christmas?”

Well, faint and fall out. We both learned something. Santa, there’s a revision in the Wish List: one Sonic Boom Alarm Clock and Bed Vibrator for RVW. He’s been good.

p.s. In case you are wondering, Stan's son returned to college and will complete his degree in the spring.

January 25, 2007 Update: I haven’t blown up again. We are making progress, but we haven’t reached perfection. A second alarm clock is now involved. More later.


Dirty Butter said...

And you said you didn't have anything about Family you could enter in the BLOG VILLAGE Family Blog Carnival! This would be perfect!!

The DEADLINE is tonight, but the way. You can send your entry to Kilroy .

Jay Croft said...

A second alarm clock? I'm curious!

Sheila said...

DB, I entered another post, my first. But I guess this would have worked too.

Jay, the Sonic Boom does the trick to actually wake him up, but he will turn it off and get back in bed sometimes. Then the second alarm clock will go off and that seems to work. Like I said before, this is a work in progress.

Jay Croft said...

Hoo ha ha ha.

Just put the first alarm clock on the other side of the room, preferably on a rather high shelf so he actually has to stretch to reach the shut-off button.

Also, remind him that he could be in the military, and you've gotta get up at the first bugle call. Offer to take him to the nearest recruiting station for an explanation.

Sheila said...

Good suggestion on moving the clocks. Rip spent several nights at a friend's house when I was out of town for the very reason I didn't trust him to get up for school. First morning he popped up fine. Thereafter, his friend's mom woke him up. She told him he was going to have big trouble in a college dorm with that Sonic Boom clock.

As to suggestion number two: I have about the most unlikely candidate for the military you would ever come across. I pray we don't reinstitute the draft any time soon or he'd be in Canada.

Jay Croft said...

We used to have a foster boy with multiple disabilities, including borderline MR. He hated to go to bed at night, and he hated to get up in the morning.

One morning we threatened to pour water on him if he didn't get up, and we kept our promise.

Thereafter we'd go in his room with an opaque glass. It was empty, but he didn't know that. When we threatened to pour water on him, he'd jump out very quick!

Dirty Butter said...

Sorry for the mixup, Shelia. I realized later on that it was Jackie who had commented that she didn't have any posts about Family. Sorry 'bout the confusing comment.

Dirty Butter said...

Oh, and I see you haven't gone back to verification, so it must be working OK for you?